Modern businesses have the luxury of being able to outsource all sorts of services that might be unaffordable or impractical to implement in-house.
IT support is one of the best examples of this, but before you jump in and choose a provider at random, here are a few key considerations to keep in mind when carrying out your search.
Location is important
In the rush to embrace outsourced IT support, you might not realize that there is an advantage to working with a provider that is local to you.
This is especially relevant if you have on-premises resources for which they will be responsible, as in the event of unplanned downtime, the longer it takes for a technician to arrive, the more it could end up costing your company in lost productivity and reputational damage.
So for example, if you are looking for the top IT support services San Francisco has to offer, USWired’s services could give you what you need in terms of access to assistance in your area.
That is not to say that support which is provided entirely remotely is unsuitable, but rather that you just have to be aware of the limitations involved.
Availability is key
Following on from the matter of an IT support provider’s regional reach, it’s also worth considering the proposed availability of the packages they offer, and how this matches with your needs as a business.
For example, you might be in need of round-the-clock assistance, whether provided remotely or on-site. If this is a deal-breaker, then it should be the main factor you use to narrow down the field of prospective providers.
Data protection regulations are getting stricter by the year, and there are a whole host of industry standards governing things like IT security.
When you are outsourcing support to a third party, you need to know whether or not they are able to keep your operations compliant with whatever rules and regs apply.
This is especially important because if a provider makes an error which leaves customer information exposed, or is responsible for some other security snafu, your business will suffer the consequences, so you cannot afford to take chances.
Flexibility & scalability are useful
No two organizations have the same IT support needs, so when comparing providers, consider the extent to which the services they offer will adapt to fit what you want from the arrangement.
For example, you might be able to encompass the management of server hardware internally, but lack the expertise to ensure that the software running on it, or the network infrastructure that makes it accessible, remains available at all times.
Being able to apportion part of this responsibility to a third party will be both convenient and economical.
Then there is the question of scalability. It is likely that your business will grow over time, and need to rely on a wider range of IT resources. A support provider must be capable of scaling its services to adapt to the changing needs you have, without being a limiting factor.
Guidance is valuable
Lastly, look out for IT support providers which do more than just keep your current setup ticking over. The best of the bunch will be equipped to advise you on the kinds of platforms, products and hardware you should plan to procure going forward.
If you still have questions about whether an IT support provider is right for your firm, check reviews from existing users and seek recommendations from others in the business world that you trust so your decision is easier to make.